As Meta looks to better align itself with the generative AI shift, it’s building a range of new ad tools that will help to refine its AI options, including new, built-in generation tools for ad creative.
Meta has today outlined its new AI Sandbox project, which it’s currently testing with a small group of advertisers, and includes a range of new options for building better ad campaigns.
Meta’s AI Sandbox currently incorporates three elements: Text Variation, Background Generation and Image Outcropping.
Text Variation will use AI to generate multiple variations of ad text, giving marketers more options to choose from to maximize performance.
As you can see in this example, the process will take your current ad copy, then provide you with a series of alternatives, based on Meta ads best practices. You’ll then be able to apply these variations to your campaign in one-click, and A/B test to measure their effectiveness.
Background Generation, meanwhile, will create backgrounds for product images from text inputs, similar to the same option in DALL·E.
That could save you time and money in building your creative elements – though some of the generative AI examples can also be a bit iffy, so I’d be careful in how you apply this.
Finally, Image Outcropping will adjust your visuals to fit different aspect ratios across multiple surfaces, like Stories or Reels.
As you can see in this example, the system will be able to simulate extended visuals, so that you can easily fit them into different formats, even if you don’t have custom creative for each.
The tools could be very helpful in putting together multiple creative elements, which, when paired with Meta’s Advantage+ targeting, could give Meta’s ad systems more creative options to then show to each user, which could help to improve ad performance.
There are some limitations with these tools as well, and you do need to keep a close eye on each generated element, in case the system confuses itself and pumps out rubbish. But these are some of the best ways to utilize the capacity of generative AI, not as a replacement, but as a complement to existing processes, which can give you more options and considerations to weigh up.
Speaking of Advantage+, Meta’s also incorporating some new targeting options into its Advantage+ campaigns, which will provide more ways to reach your ideal target audience.
Meta says that, soon, advertisers will be able to switch from manual to Advantage+ campaigns in one-click, making it easier to integrate the process, while Catalog Ads for Advantage+ campaigns will be able to utilize video elements as well.
Meta’s also adding a new Performance Comparisons report, to provide more insight into manual vs Advantage+ campaign performance, while it’s also adding new manual inputs into Advantage+ targeting, giving advertisers more ways to guide the system in reaching the right audience.
Meta also says that it’s now using larger, more complex AI models within its ad system to improve performance.
“For example, previously on Instagram, we needed one model for optimizing clicks on Story ads and another model to optimize conversions or sales for ads on Reels. Now, with more advanced AI modeling that optimizes across all surfaces (Feed, Story, Explore, and Reels), it allows us to transfer learnings across multiple objectives at the same time, which helps improve advertiser conversions and the quality of ads people see.”
Advantage+ campaigns have been producing solid results for performance marketers, with many now putting more reliance on Meta’s systems to help them maximize their reach and resonance across its apps. That’s been especially beneficial in the wake of Apple’s iOS 14 update, which has seen many users opt out of data tracking in Meta’s apps, reducing the pool of insights available for connecting with the right users.
With fewer manual, direct inputs to go on, that limits performance within more restrictive parameters. But as Meta improves its AI systems, that’s enabled many marketers to keep getting their ads in front of the right people, based on usage behaviors and other signals inferred by interactions and connections.
Meta’s certainly working to keep up with the generative AI shift, with OpenAI essentially pushing the envelope by launching tools like ChatGPT and DALL·E, and forcing the hands of the tech giants, who’ve been developing similar AI initiatives for years.
Both Meta and Google have been hesitant to go public with their AI tools, but now, they pretty much have to, and these new options will provide significantly enhanced capacity in Meta’s ad tools, and could end up being hugely valuable in your process.
They’re still in development, and results will vary, but it may be worth familiarizing yourself with Meta’s new AI tools.
Meta’s currently testing its AI Sandbox with a small group of advertisers, with expanded availability coming later this year. The updates to Advantage+ will be rolling out in Ads Manager from this week.